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About the course

This course is a vocational training programme covering all aspects of audio engineering, studio production and live sound production. Learners will work with highly skilled music industry professionals in 'The Shrubbery', which is a modern professional recording studio located in Bury St Edmunds. Learners will be taught recording, mixing and mastering, and studio management skills. As well as producing the music of the learners on the music course, a proportion of the work is producing/engineering for clients of the studio, including local bands, solo artists and songwriters.


In addition to recording, a large focus of the course is on live sound production and a unique number of live concerts are designed and produced throughout the year, both on campus and at venues around the local area. Learners learn lighting design and operation, visual projection design and operation, events management, and stage crewing, as well as PA operation and mixing.


Learners will also undertake sessions about the music business, how to work freelance within the industry, music theory and listening skills plus historical studies of popular music. We aim for students to finish this course with contacts in the music industry and enough work experience to either go straight in to employment or on to further study. 

Entry requirements

At least five GCSE's Grade C or above, including maths and English at Grade C (4), or a suitable Edexcel (BTEC) merit grade Level 2 in Performing Arts, Popular Music, Music Technology or a related discipline, or a GNVQ Intermediate in Performing Arts and Entertainment Industries. 


It is preferable, but not essential, for learners to have some musical background, either as a composer or a musician as well as a background in music technology. Prospective students will be invited in for a taster session and interview to help determine the suitability of candidates for the course.


The College offers a wide menu of Level 3 Diplomas. We will work with all learners in their first six weeks at College to place them on the appropriate Diploma programme that best meets their individual needs and best ensures their success. Within this course, learners will take the UAL Level 3 Extended Diploma qualification in Music Performance and Production (Music Technology)


Any student aged 16 to 19 who does not hold a GCSE A* to C (9 to 4 on the new grading structure) or equivalent qualifications in Maths and English by age 16 will need to continue to study these subjects in each academic year.

What you'll learn (core modules)

Across the two years, you will have sessions in the following subjects:


  • Live sound production
  • Studio production
  • Business for the modern world
  • The science of sound / ProTools
  • Freelancing skills
  • Visual Design
  • Lighting design and operation
  • Careers development
  • Foley and sound design
  • Research skills
  • Contextual studies of Popular Music.
  • Music Theory
  • Listening Skills


Sessions are a mixture of lectures, workshops and classroom based activities. As the course progresses, there is more emphasis on independent learning and the development of practical skills. 

How will I be assessed?

Throughout year one and year two, you will have a mixture of assignments. These will involve background research, journals, log books etc but all assignments have an industry focus to them such as producing an EP in the recording studio, or running live sound. 


Your final grade for the course will be calculated based upon a substantial final project. This project is an opportunity for you to specialise in an area of study, and you will have complete autonomy to work on your project for three months. This could be producing an album, organising a music festival, developing 3D mapping for a show. The choices available will be determined over the course of the two years. 

Where will the course take me?

We offer a range of courses which lead on from Level 3 Music Technology. These include the Level 4 Live Music Production course and the BA (Hons) Creative and Commercial Music course. Both courses are delivered on site, and learners on the Level 3 will have sufficient experience to meet the entry requirements for both courses.


Will I need any materials or equipment?

A fee of £15 is required, which covers the purchase of a crew T-shirt.


Dark jeans or 'combat' trousers, a small torch and sturdy rubber soled footwear with steel toe caps should be purchased for live production work.


Learners will be required to purchase a USB 3.0 Memory stick/Hard drive and headphones before the course starts.


If learners wish to purchase music production equipment, we will discuss this with them before the course starts.


Abstraction Festival
Abstraction Festival 1
Best of Bond show
Drum riser for Best of Bond show
Finale pyros for Best of Bond show
Lighting design
Live Mixing
Live at the Hunter Club
Live sound for Quadrophonic show
Now Thats What I Call 80s 90s Show 1
Now Thats What I Call 80s 90s show
Penultimate Show
Pyros at Songs from Silver Screen show
Shrubbery Recording Studio
Shrubbery Recording Studio 2
Shrubbery Recording Studio 3
Shrubbery Recording Studio Desk
Shrubbery Recording Studio Tape machine
Shrubbery Recording Studio outboard
Shrubbery Recording Studio patch bay and synths
Shrubbery Studio Live Room
Stage design for Live Lounge Jukebox
Stage setup for Girl Power show
Tech student on sound
The Live sound desk

Days & times

Starting September 2020

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